Tata Institute of Fundamental Research

Epistemic Reasoning and Its Applications

Speaker: Rohit Parikh (City University of New York Department of Computer Science 365 Fifth Avenue New York, NY 10016-4309 United States of America)
Organiser: Paritosh K Pandya
Date: Monday, 31 Dec 2012, 11:00 to 12:00
Venue: AG-80

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Abstract:  It is clear from examples from Shakespeare and others that knowledge and belief influence behavior.
But to understand these examples some technical tools are needed.  We will introduce the audience to Kripke structures and to history based semantics (the latter due to RP and R. Ramanujam).   This semantics allows us to understand how knowledge grows as a result of events and communication.  The initial intended application was to distributed computing, but the tool has more general use.
We will explain Jan Plaza's result on public announcements and some joint work with Tasdemir and Witzel on how a knowledge manipulator can influence behavior by sending signals.
If time permits we will take a wider, more philosophical perspective on knowledge, explaining something about Plato's theory of knowledge as expounded in the Meno and the Theaetetus and the Gettier puzzles about knowledge.